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New Red Tape For Fair Victims

12:01 PM Friday 5/25/12 | |

Victims of last summer’s Indiana State Fair stage collapse are still waiting to collect settlement payments two months after lawmakers approved an additional pool of $6 million.

  • Stage Wreckage

    Indiana State Police and authorities survey the collapsed rigging and stage at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis.
    August 14, 2011

    (AP Photo)

    | 

They are now being told they must go through a different collection process from the one used to distribute the original $5 million state-capped pool.

Lawmakers in March approved the additional $6 million for those injured and the families of the seven people killed when high winds sent stage rigging into a crowd of fans waiting for an Aug. 13 performance by Sugarland.

The AG’s office said in an email to claimants that it is trying to find an “efficient and respectful way” to distribute the money while limiting lawsuits, WTHR-TV reported.

State officials said the previous model used for claims against the initial $5 million won’t work because lawmakers approved specific payouts. The families of the seven people who died received $300,000 from the $5 million in December. The new law allows them to get another $400,000 each to bring their total to the maximum $700,000 allowed under Indiana law.

Those who suffered non-permanent physical injuries are to get 100 percent of their out-of-pocket medical costs paid. Previously, the state reimbursed just 65 percent of their medical bills. Those who suffered permanent paralysis or physical trauma could have their amounts determined through arbitration.


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